Whinny Lane (Whinny Lane on the Apple Valley light Railway to give it its full title) was my third Gn15 layout and it would be my first exhibition layout in Gn15. It was planned from the outset to go to exhibitions and I hoped that learning from the mistakes of my previous 2 layouts would enable me to build a layout that was entertaining to watch and fun to operate.
The theme was to be an estate railway to enable me to show off the large amount of models of the work of Sir Arthur Heywood I was building. But I drew the greatest inspiration for the model from the Sand Hutton Light railway in Yorkshire, England. The name of the layout came from a caption to a photograph in a book on minimum gauge railways. All the buildings are insipired by photographs of those on the Sand Hutton. I could now write a piece about the Sand Hutton but that would deprive you of finding this site that documents the lines history and route in a delightful way
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As per usual. I used pink foam for the baseboard. Perhaps you think I go through a lot of pink foam for baseboards but the baseboards for my first 4 layouts came from the same one sheet of foam. This time I braced this 6' length with L girders made of 4 x 1 wood, just in case the foam started to bend as I scenicked the layout. As it did with the apple valley light railway. The curves are a very sharp - 6" radius. Something HO/OO scale modellers might baulk at but short wheelbase 4 coupled locomotves go around them with no problems. The secret to laying such sharp curves is to take the rail out of the flexible track and prebend it, before putting it back in the sleeper base and laying it.
The feature of this layout that attracted to most attention at exhibitions was the working crane that would lift crates off the wagons and through the door on the first floor. A crowd would always gather when I operated this at shows. It took a while to work out how to make this work. But in the end it worked perfectly.
Whinny Lane attended several shows in Minnesota and was very well received. In the end I retired and scrapped it as its size made it awkward to transport and I wanted something easier to show at exhibitions that something would end up being Purespring Watercress.